Most expensive XI of the 2019 summer transfer window

Many top European clubs are in a transitional phase and as a result, there have been many expensive transfers this summer. In fact, there have been three transfers which cost €100m or more so far. So, here is the most expensive XI featuring only players who moved during this window.

Goalkeeper

Jasper Cillessen (Barcelona to Valencia for €35m)

Jasper Cillessen was at Barcelona for three seasons but made only thirty-two appearances in all competitions for them, including five in the league. However, he was still the Netherlands’ first-choice goalkeeper throughout this time.

The 30-year-old moved to Valencia this summer to play regularly and Neto moved in the opposite direction. Despite his limited playing time in recent years, Valencia spent €35m for his services and this makes him the fifth most expensive goalkeeper in the world behind Kepa Arrizabalaga, Alisson Becker, Gianluigi Buffon and Ederson Moraes.

Fullbacks

Joao Cancelo (Juventus to Manchester City for €65m)

Portugal has many right-backs playing for top European clubs including Nelson Semedo and Ricardo Pereira but Joao Cancelo is arguably the best right-back from the country at the moment.

The Benfica academy graduate impressed at Valencia, Inter Milan, and Juventus before joining Manchester City this summer. City paid £27.4m and sent Danilo in the opposite direction to sign the 25-year-old. With Danilo’s transfer value is accounted for, Cancelo’s transfer fee comes to €65m and this makes him the most expensive right-back in history.

Lucas Hernandez (Atletico Madrid to Bayern Munich for €80m)

Lucas Hernandez who won the World Cup with France in 2018 joined Bayern Munich this summer for a club and Bundesliga record €80m. He’s now the third most expensive defender in the world and also the fifth most expensive French player of all-time.

The 23-year-old is a versatile defender has predominantly played as a left-back for France but he is expected to play as a centre-back for the Bavarian club.

Centrebacks

Harry Maguire (Leicester City to Manchester United for €87m)

Manchester United needed to shore up their defence after a dismal 2018/19 season and for that purpose, they signed a right-back and a centre-back this summer.

United only wanted Harry Maguire from Leicester City for the centre-back position and in the end, they paid €87m for the 26-year-old thus making him the most expensive defender in the world and also the most expensive English player beating the previous records held by Virgil van Dijk and Raheem Sterling respectively.

Matthijs de Ligt (Ajax to Juventus for €75m)

Matthijs de Ligt was linked with Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Liverpool during the summer transfer window but in the end, he joined Juventus for €75m.

The 20-year-old is now the fourth most expensive defender in the world, the second most expensive Dutch player and the fourth most expensive signing by a Serie A club.

Midfielders

Frenkie de Jong (Ajax to Barcelona for €75m)

Frenkie de Jong’s decision to join Barcelona was announced back in January and the promising 22-year-old midfielder is expected to replace Sergio Busquets in the long run.

De Jong is Barcelona’s fifth most expensive signing of all-time. In addition, he’s the second most expensive Dutch player and also the most expensive player sold by a Dutch club. He shares the latter two records with De Ligt.

Rodri (Atletico Madrid to Manchester City for €70m)

Before this summer transfer window, Manchester City arguably had one of the best squads in the world but after this transfer window, there’s no doubt that they have the best squad in the world.

A replacement or backup for Fernandinho was the one player missing from the City squad before this summer and they addressed that by signing Atletico Madrid’s Rodri.

Man City paid his release €70m release clause which made him the club’s most expensive signing and also the second most expensive Spanish player behind Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Wingers

Eden Hazard (Chelsea to Real Madrid for €100m)

Real Madrid needed to add some quality to their attack this summer after an embarrassing 2018/19 season and they did that by signing Eden Hazard for a club-record €100m.

Los Blancos only had to pay that much money for him because he was in the final year of his contract. Otherwise, he would have cost significantly more. Nevertheless, he’s now the eighth-most expensive player in the world and the most expensive Belgian ever.

Nicolas Pepe (Lille to Arsenal for €80m)

Arsenal squad was bereft of a quality winger last season and they addressed that issue by signing Nicolas Pepe from Lille for €80m amidst interest from Liverpool and Inter Milan among other clubs.

Pepe broke the record of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Riyad Mahrez to become Arsenal’s most expensive signing and the most expensive African player respectively.

Strikers

Joao Felix (Benfica to Atletico Madrid for €126m)

Joao Felix, a product of Benfica’s famous academy, only broke through to the first team in the second half of last season. However, he was so impressive that a host of top European clubs were on his tail this summer but in the end, Atletico Madrid won the race.

Atletico had to replace Griezmann and they spent €126m on Felix making him the costliest signing by a La Liga side, the most expensive player sold by a Portuguese club and also the most expensive Portuguese player – a record Cristiano Ronaldo held for a decade.

Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid to Barcelona for €120m)

Barcelona wanted to sign Antoine Griezmann last summer but the player opted to stay at Atletico but this summer, he forced a move and joined Barcelona. However, the Catalan club still had to pay his lowered release clause of €120m.

Griezmann is now Barcelona’s record signing, the fourth most expensive player in the world, the second most expensive Frenchman and also the second most expensive signing by a La Liga club.

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